ABFM has partnered with the American Board of Anesthesiology (ABA) to make longitudinal assessment available through ABA’s MOCA Minute program.

Beginning in 2023, if you are Diplomate who holds a Certificate of Added Qualification (CAQ) in Pain Medicine, you will transition to MOCA Minute in the year your 10-year examination requirement comes due. If you gain initial certification in Pain Medicine in 2023 or after, you will begin MOCA Minute participation in the year following your successful one-day examination.

Going forward, you can expect to begin a new cycle of MOCA Minute every five years to maintain your Pain Medicine CAQ.

As a participating physician, you will complete up to 15 questions each quarter over five years. Clinical references are not to be used during the exam and you have one minute to complete each question. Immediate feedback is provided, and you choose the time and location that’s convenient for you. You’ll remain certified throughout your participation as long as you meet other ABFM requirements.

how it works

  • You will begin in the first quarter of the year when your exam requirement is due or the year after your next successful one-day examination attempt.
  • You will answer up to 15 timed questions each quarter for five years.
  • If performance at the end of five years is sufficient to reach the minimum passing standard, a new five-year cycle begins in year six and certification continues.
  • Questions can be answered all at one time, or you may space out completing questions during the quarter.
  • Questions that are not viewed during a quarter will remain available to be answered throughout the calendar year they were originally released. These questions can be answered during other quarters within the year, but note that the maximum number of questions that can be answered on a single day is 30. Questions that are not viewed by December 31 of the year they were originally released will be counted incorrect
  • Immediate feedback and critiques are provided for each question answered.
  • Quarterly performance summaries will be available at the end of the first year, so you can continually assess your performance and identify focused areas for future study.
  • Final results will be provided following the end of year five.

MOCA Minute

Eligibility Requirements

Who is Eligible?

  • All ABFM Diplomates holding a Certificate of Added Qualification (CAQ) in Pain Medicine will transition to longitudinal assessment (MOCA minute) in the year their 10-year examination requirement comes due. Physicians whose last successful Pain Medicine one-day examination was in 2014 are to begin MOCA Minute Participation in 2024.
  • Physicians who successfully sat for the initial certification or continuing certification one-day Pain Medicine examination in 2023 are required to begin participating in MOCA Minute in 2024.

Who is not eligible?

  • ABFM Diplomates pursuing initial Pain Medicine certification are not allowed to participate in MOCA Minute.
  • ABFM Diplomates whose Pain Medicine certification has lapsed are not allowed to enroll in MOCA Minute.
  • Physicians who are not certified in Family Medicine with ABFM are not allowed to enroll in MOCA Minute through ABFM.

APPLICATION information

Candidate Information Booklet
To assist you with the Pain Medicine Examination Application and results process, ABFM provides you with a Candidate Information Booklet that includes a comprehensive description of your requirements and policies. We recommend that you read this thoroughly before beginning the application process.

Pain Medicine
Candidate Information Booklet(s):

    2023 [PDF, 344KB]

    2024 [PDF, 382KB]

Online application details
To participate in MOCA Minute, you will need to complete an application that will be reviewed and approved by ABFM, just as you have done previously for the one-day examination. There is no additional cost for MOCA Minute compared to the one-day examination option. The online application can be accessed inside your MyABFM Portfolio during the open application period. Click here to review important dates and deadlines for the online application.

ADA Accommodations
You may request additional time for answering questions via the online application.  If accommodations become necessary after the application process is completed, you may submit a written request to [email protected].

Ongoing requirements
You will need to submit annual CAQ process fees and continue completing Family Medicine Continuous Certification Process requirements in the three-year stages to remain enrolled in MOCA Minute. Note that continued certification is still contingent upon meeting the current and continuous three-year stage requirements for Family Medicine Certification.

Should you not submit annual CAQ process fees and/or not complete the requirements for Family Medicine Certification during the established time frames (Three-Year Stage), you will be removed from MOCA Minute and lose certification status. If you are removed from MOCA Minute, you may only regain CAQ certification by taking and passing the one-day examination.

Family Medicine Certification requirements are expected to alter over time and continued certification will be dependent upon adherence to the then current policies and procedures. It will be your obligation to become and remain familiar with the Family Medicine Certification program rules.

Application withdrawal

Withdrawal Prior to Beginning Participation. You may withdraw your MOCA Minute application on, or before, the final deadline to submit your online application. This can be done through your MyABFM Portfolio.

If your MOCA Minute application has reached an approved status before you choose to withdraw, you will need to contact ABFM for assistance at [email protected] or 877-223-7437.

Withdrawal After Beginning Participation. 

Once enrolled in MOCA Minute, you will not have the ability to withdraw your participation inside ABA’s exam delivery platform. If you wish to withdraw after your application has been approved, you will need to submit a written request to Debbie Medley at [email protected] or 859-538-7197.


MOCA Minute is designed to assess Diplomates in a comparable way to the one-day examination. The longitudinal assessment will deliver up to 15 questions each quarter that can be answered online, anywhere, at any time. The assessment is delivered over five years. Successfully completing the assessment and achieving a passing score will satisfy your examination requirement and enable you to maintain your board certification.

Examination Content
MOCA Minute for Pain Medicine is a test of the knowledge and clinical judgement in aspects of pain medicine required to demonstrate at a high level of competence.

Complete details regarding exam content may be accessed on the ABA website: www.theaba.org

Answering Questions
The MOCA Minute platform delivers up to 15 multiple-choice questions each quarter through ABA’s delivery platform called MOCA Minute. Participants will have one minute to answer each question. The question set can be answered all at one time during the quarter or can be spread over multiple sessions within the quarter.

Questions that are viewed and answered will be counted correct or incorrect.  Questions that are viewed but not answered will be counted incorrect.  

Questions that are not viewed during a quarter will remain available to be answered throughout the calendar year they were originally released. These questions can be answered during other quarters within the year, but note that the maximum number of questions that can be answered on a single day is 30. Questions that are not viewed by December 31 of the year they were originally released will be counted incorrect.

The table below lists the beginning and ending date for each quarter that you will have to answer your questions.

Quarterly schedule

Hardware and Software Recommendations
MOCA Minute replaces the need to sit for a one-day examination. However, we strongly encourage you to approach this assessment with the same level of focus and determination that you would give to the traditional examination. While we realize that sometimes factors beyond your control have the potential to disturb your assessment, here are a few key checkpoints that will help to minimize problems:

  • Device: When answering questions, we suggest using a reliable laptop, desktop computer, or tablet that you are familiar with. While the questions will display on smart phones and other devices with internet browsing capability, your best option will be a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet.
  • Software: The question delivery platform will be viewable through an ABA website, so you will be using an internet browsing program (Edge, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc.) to access the assessment. Be sure to have the most updated version of your web browser.
  • Internet Connection: Be sure that you have a secure, stable, and reliable connection to the internet before you begin a question. A wired connection at your home or office will provide the best connectivity. A wi-fi connected computer or tablet with strong signal is your second-best option.  We advise against the use of cellular networks as they can be less reliable.
  • Environment: Create an environment conducive to taking an examination when answering questions. Remember that you will have a limited window of time to answer each question, so you want to eliminate as many potential distractions as possible. A few factors to consider: people, pets, electronic devices, telephones, time sensitive tasks, extreme weather conditions (power/internet outages), and your own health/safety. If you have printed or electronic resources you plan to use, make them accessible to yourself before you begin answering questions.
  • Support: If you encounter issues at any time while participating in this assessment, contact ABA right away at 866-999-7501 or [email protected]. ABA office hours are Monday - Friday, 8:00am – 5:00pm (Eastern).


Immediate Feedback
Once an answer is submitted for a question, you will receive an immediate response indicating whether the answer is correct or incorrect. A critique will be provided that explains the evidence for the correct answer and the reasons that the incorrect options were incorrect. You will also have an opportunity to provide feedback about the question that only ABA will see.

Ongoing Feedback
ABA uses a calculation called “p-value” to evaluate your performance in MOCA Minute. P-value is the probability, based on exam performance, that the minimum level of knowledge has been maintained. A p-value of 0.10 is considered the minimum passing standard. 

Final Score
At the end of year five, your final p-value will be calculated to determine if you met the minimum passing standard. A summative decision will then be made regarding your assessment based on your final p-value calculation.